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Best low-to-mid range water cooling system

Last response: in Overclocking
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September 26, 2011 3:55:37 PM

Hey everyone, thanks for taking the time to read my posts :) 

First off, here are my system specs:
Case: Coolermaster Centurion II (with a total of 5 120/140mm case fans)
M/b: Asus P7H55-M
RAM: A-RAM 4Gb (2x2Gb) DDR3@1300MHz
PSU: Gigabyte Odin 600W
CPU: Core i5 760@2.80GHz (currently running the stock cooler)
GPU: Gigabyte Nvidia GTX 560 Ti SuperOverclocked Edition

At the moment I'm looking at basically three main watercooling systems (self contained, factory sealed). These are:
CoolIT ECO A.L.C.
http://www.pccasegear.com/index.php?main_page=product_i...
Antec KUHLER H20 620
http://www.pccasegear.com/index.php?main_page=product_i...
Corsair Hydro Series H60

These are all around a similar price point (within $20) with the CoolIT being the cheapest and the H60 being the most expensive. For me, first and foremost would be quality - I don't want the slightest chance of a coolant leakage - with performance obciously important as well. I am planning on overclocking my i5 760 from 2.8GHz to as high as i can get it while remaing stable - most likely 3.5-4.0GHz.

Which is the best cooler fore me?
NOTE: I will probably replace the single stock fans with dual Coolermasters in a push-pull configuration, or something similar, so the fan quality isn't a big issue.
a c 330 K Overclocking
September 26, 2011 4:02:10 PM

I'd say either the Antec or Corsair. You are getting into ~$100 territory and there are some cheaper air coolers that will perform almost as well, and almost into the Rasa watercooling kit that performs significantly better on price/performance average.
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September 26, 2011 4:27:00 PM

The main reasons I was leaning towards a water cooling system are:

a) I don't have the room for a 120mm fan-based air cooler (i.e. all of the decent/good ones) in my case - due to the dual side fans.
b) I do however, have a stock exhaust fan in the rear of my case which could accomodate a single 120mm fan-based radiator.
c) I've never experimented with water cooling before and would like to give it a try, plus it looks tidy, professional and would free up some much-needed space for taller RAM sticks.

Thanks for your replies :) 

EDIT: At this stage I'm thinking the H60 is the best choice, with the most reliability and performance for the money. Opinions?
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a b K Overclocking
September 26, 2011 5:19:03 PM

Go to the Corsair forums and see how many folks have experienced water leaks with these coolers... and damaged hardware. Good water cooling starts at ~$200 and goes up.
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a c 330 K Overclocking
September 26, 2011 6:20:13 PM

Quote:
I've never experimented with water cooling before and would like to give it a try, plus it looks tidy, professional and would free up some much-needed space for taller RAM sticks.


An H60 really isn't accomplishing this...you are actually far closer to an air cooler with this experience than anything watercooling offers.

Rasa kits start at around $130 and work up to $185 or so. They use a great CPU block and good to great radiators (RS and RX series). The pump combo is fairly decent value for the price range, especially for a beginner. Some have had issues but there is a very large majority of users that haven't had any problems with these kits. Far less than folks using a LCS cooler from those manufacturers making them...
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September 27, 2011 4:37:03 AM

Thing is though, I didn't want to spend the extra money for a more 'custom' loop and also, frankly, I don't have the experience/balls to feel confident enough to set something like that up. Out of the coolers I mentioned originally though, the H60 does seem to have the best reliablity records - I checked dozens of pages of both the Corsair and Newegg forums and product reviews, and on the whole people seem to be satisfied with them. If I was building a system from scratch I'd look at doing a complete custom loop, or maybe a high end self-contained system, but this is just an upgrade. Thanks for all of your opinions and advice though, much appreciated :) 
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a c 330 K Overclocking
September 27, 2011 1:31:54 PM

No problem.

Building a loop isn't as difficult or as scary as it first sounds, but I understand. Good luck...come back and let us know your experience; it would be of benefit to others going forward.
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September 28, 2011 7:09:12 AM

Thanks guys, for all of your input, spent a LOT of time researching this and still cannot confidently pick a 'winner'. At this stage I decided to go for an interim-type air cooler in the form of the Xigmatek Colloseum, looks awesome and should provide decent peformance for some mild to mid-range overclocking. Once again, thanks for the opinions and suggestions fella's :) 
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